It seems like those of us on the American side of the Pacific ocean are missing out on some fantastic innovations in air conditioning. In Japan, Hitachi is introducing a new wall-mounted unit packed with cameras and sensors that's able to redirect its chilly blasts towards people, parts of a room that are too warm, and even around obstacles.
The X-series of AC units will rely on three separate cameras to operate at peak efficiency. A thermal camera will be able to spot the warmest and coldest spots in a room, a regular camera will be used to track the presence and location of people, and an infrared camera will look for obstacles that might obstruct air flow. These cameras work alongside a series of three flaps that direct the cold air from the unit into the room, helping it reach the spots where it's needed most, without being blocked.
The units, which range in price from around $2,200 to $3,600, will probably require you to jump through a few hoops to get them outside of Japan. But it might be totally worth the effort to own what's basically a Predator that dispenses the perfect cooling sensation instead of hot death. [Hitachi via Impress via Newlaunches]